The new generation of cold weather heat pumps are producing phenomenal cost savings even compared to natural gas heating.
Tests comparing the efficiency of new cold weather air to air heat pumps show that the new generation of heat pumps result in 49% energy savings over heating with natural gas. These results don’t even take into consideration the savings of a heat pump compared to a conventional air conditioning unit that run on electricity. Heat pumps convert to air conditioners in the summer and do it more efficiently than normal air conditioning units.
The thinking on heat pumps in the past is that they do not perform below zero very well because the old theory was that there wasn’t enough heat in the air to remove to create significant amount of heat. When a heat pump cannot remove heat from the air outside it is unable to produce heat and must rely on the homes furnace to produce the necessary heat. These furnaces can be oil, propane or natural gas. The new science on new heat pumps tells us that even air at -18C contains 85% of the heat of air at 21C. That means that when it is cold outside the heat pump still can remove enough heat from the air to heat your home, thus putting an end to the thinking that below zero heat pumps do not work very well.
If you’re wondering how a heat pump does this I will explain;
A heat pump transfers heat by circulating a refrigerant through an evaporation and condensation cycle. The refrigerant flows through an outdoor coil where it absorbs heat from the air as it is evaporated. It is then compressed at high pressure at a second coil where it condenses, this releases the heat absorbed earlier in the cycle, this then has accomplished bringing the heat from the air outside to the inside. Once the indoor coil has this heat it circulates it through your duct work to your entire home.
With this new technology it makes more sense to have a heat pump added to your heating system, this will allow you to save money on heating and cooling and depending on how little or how often you use it will tell you how fast it pays for itself in energy conservation. On average a heat pump pays for itself in under 5 years, which is a very quick turn around when we are talking about heating and cooling units.
Village Builders Inc.
Information for this blog came in part from the solplan review NO. 170 May 2013